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On December 1, 2017, TOMChallenge11 commented on Can the giant Ant replicate its model worldwide? :

Thank you sharing Zoe. Ant Financial is indeed a role model for any fintech ecosystem, particularly compared to the slower western worl din this respect. I wonder how Any Financial views its relationship and perhaps competition, with Tencent and WeChat? While Ant Financial controls the Merchant World and many B2C transactions, the WeChat ecosystem as a well-rounded platform is a clear competition to Ant. the ability of a consumer to browse through one app, the equivalents of Whatsapp, Opentable, Uber, TaskRabbit, Amazon and more is quite a feat.

The next generation of fintech ecosystems like Ant will house all financial transactions for customers including eInsurance, eMortgage, eInvesting and many more. I am excited for the future and Ant is leading the way with Jack Ma and Ali Baba

On December 1, 2017, TOMChallenge11 commented on A Green Merchant of Death? :

Thanks for sharing this Nate. You bring up existential points about tackling climate change and the ancillary repercussions of achieving energy sustainability. Solar energy, for example, is a relatively “green” source of energy, but what many critics point to is the process of extracting silicon is determent for the environment in the same way Nickel, Lithium, and Cobalt are for battery storage.

The question is, what is the cost of the move to energy sustainability? the human capital cost involved the millions of jobs at risk in traditional energy sectors as a result of this shit. Another cost is the sunk cost of existing infrastructure and technologies that investors poured in. The third pertinent cost in this case is the fact that the “bad guy” in Phillip Morris is leading the way in energy sustainability as a relative bad actor in it’s long history as a company. The cost, therefore, is relative, and I believe as with any technology, the cost of change in high and will fall off with the long tail

On December 1, 2017, TOMChallenge11 commented on Can Colombia’s one-stop App become profitable? :

Rappi, like many startups in emerging markets is attempting to overcome many digital and standard infrastructure related problems. 1- credit card penetration has yet to meet developed markets standard in these markets. Many companies like Rappi are cash-on-delivery, a liability across cash collection, a hit against your margin for the man power to process it, and lack of credible and reliable data. 2 – as mentioned by Ivan, last mile logistics is a large pain point, where addresses and GPS systems are largely lagging in these markets. 3 – the relative lack of scale and unit economics of this business model is a large pain point for growth and reinvestment in new technology.

I genuinely hope companies like Rappi can scale across geographies like Latin America, but many constraints remain ahead. Thank you for sharing your view, Dani

On December 1, 2017, TOMChallenge11 commented on Transforming Ford: Supplying Mobility in a Digital World :

This is great, Trevor. I appreciated the recognition of the 11,000 strong dealer network – an underappreciated consequence of the next generation of mobility. Perhaps Ford can learn from Tesla, who has taken an innovative approach to dealing with the next generation managing parts, servicing and sales. Tesla states 90% of problems in Tesla’s can be serviced by WiFi [1]. This asset light model is the next generation of the dealer network that Ford has in the past relied on. They will still play a major role moving forward, but Ford will have to communicate to the dealers that they remain a vital part of the ecosystem, but must adapt to the next generation of mobility,

[1] Tesla is serious about its new mobile service effort – here’s a glimpse at its capacity

On November 30, 2017, TOMChallenge11 commented on Will we be able to Amazon prime prescription drugs soon? :

The graphic illustrating the Pharma Distribution supply chain caught my attention: it is complex and seemingly ripe for disinter-mediation. As articulated in the article – the greatest hurdle to cross is a relationship issue. The Pharma supply chain is longstanding with deep-rooted relationships between manufacturers, PBM’s, Pharmacies and consumers. Will a new entrant like Amazon be accepted by the ecosystem? The low hanging fruit for Amazon will be to tackle the over-the-counter OTC drugs that are widely available and have multiple manufacturers – the first step to trialing the convoluted regulatory and identification hurdle.
It begs the question – what roles do doctors play in the purchasing decision? As the prescription writers, do they play a key role for Amazon? Or are they simply a cog in a well established supply chain ecosystem?

The key to achieving 100% renewable energy mix is absolutely storage as mentioned in the piece. The question remains, will it follow Moore’s law, where the rapid increase in capacity and production will lead to an exponential decline in prices as seen in the semiconductor and solar industries? The current constraint with storage is the duration element – how long can batteries hold the energy without realizing energy losses.

In addition to battery storage, including traditional chemical properties like Lithium Ion, other innovative approaches are being considered for large-scale renewable integration. Molten Salt is considered a viable option, used by companies like SolarReserve and BrightSource, but is difficult to scale to megaprojects. More traditionally, pumped hydro can be considered as a storage option for utility projects but the land constraints are inherent. [1]

The road to 100% renewable energy mix is long and Moore’s Law holds the key for significant change in the near future.

[1] Solar After Dark: BrightSource Adding Molten Salt Storage for Power Plants,